Photograph by J. Carrier
Around the world, clothing and adornments distinguish people and cultures. Often an observer’s first hint about the people wearing them, clothes can reflect tradition, spirituality, and utility—or simply fashion’s ephemeral nature and widespread influence.
Here, a Sudanese woman wears a traditional tobe, which wraps around the body.
Buddhist Monk, Myanmar
Photograph by Alistair McIntosh, My Shot
Wearing the robes of monkhood, a young Buddhist looks out from a monastery in Myanmar. Red, maroon, and saffron are the dominant colors of Buddhist monastic garments.
Photograph by Jeanie Lewis, My Shot
Colorful saris match the blossoms carried by women in Pushkar, India. Indian textiles encompass thousands of local styles and techniques.
Fashion Shoot, Hong Kong
Photograph by Brian Yen
Fashion photographers use stacks of bamboo as a backdrop for a shoot in Hong Kong. China represents a growing market for trendy and upscale fashions.
Photograph by Victor R. Caivano/AP
Assistants adjust the cape of Spanish matador Serafin Marin before a bullfight in Pamplona in 2008. The matador’s costume is one of the most recognizable of Spain’s traditional garments.
Traditional Dresses, Provence
Photograph by Dan Peretz
Women in Provence, France, wear traditional dresses for a memorial gathering.
Muslim Women, Iran
Photograph by Thomas Dworzak/Magnum Photos
Women wearing Islamic dress navigate a busy street in Tehran. Muslim women commonly don concealing garments to maintain modesty.
Photograph by Patrick Zachmann/Magnum Photos
Workers from Guizhou Province pause on a sidewalk in Shanghai. Western fashions and ideas have traditionally entered China through the growing city, a former treaty port hospitable to foreigners.
Photograph by Steve Winter
Rough-cut turquoise stones adorn the headdresses of two women in Ladakh, a remote Himalayan region. Long, heavy robes are worn by men and women alike.
Photograph by Dan Westergren
Maasai women wear colorful clothing and adornments as they walk on a plain in Tanzania.
Photograph by Bas Uterwijk, Your Shot
A man sits with his granddaughter on the outside of a temple in Bhaktapur in Nepal’s Kathmandu Valley. His fabric hat—called a topi—is part of the Himalayan country’s traditional dress.
Folk Dress, Serbia
Photograph by Igor Markov, My Shot
A Serbian woman wears traditional folk attire. In Serbia, the style of folk dress varies according to the region.
Sun Protection, Shanghai
Photograph by Justin Guariglia
A woman wears a visor and sleeved shawl to protect her skin from the sun as she rides her bicycle in Shanghai. Many women in Asia cover themselves in light clothing to prevent sun damage.
Models, New York City
Photograph by Justin Christopher Anderson
Models wear daring designs in New York City, which hosts major fashion shows every year and is known for its offerings of high-end, avant-garde, and vintage clothing.
2016 National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
Browse photos of nature, cities, and people and share your favorite photos.